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ZIMRA Working On Replacing Humans With Technology To Reduce Corruption By Employees

Information Communication Technology (ICT) has a great potential to improve revenue collection by automating processes, better servicing taxpayers and increasing compliance. That’s why, ZIMRA is working on the development and implementation of ICT in its tax collection process to ultimately reduce or replace humans. The country’s tax collector, ZIMRA that this initiative is one way of reducing corruption by its employees and increasing tax collection efficiency. ZIMRA commissioner-general Faith Mazani said;

Zimra has invested in ICT to improve our efficiency and service delivery to our taxpaying public, but this also provides an audit trail to trace any irregular activities. We are also working on enhancing our ICT capabilities to remove human interface with our staff that promotes rent-seeking behaviours, especially at our border posts.

Cases of corruption of ZIMRA employees are well known outside mainstream media reporting. If one doesn’t want to pay full duty or tax or they want to smuggle, they just must bribe a ZIMRA employee. But with the implementation of technology for managing boarder posts activities and collecting taxes, these “rent-seeking” behaviors could be sidelined. Athough, ZIMRA has tried to curb corruption by its employees through monitoring their lifestyles, corruption, in both forms I have highlighted above is still happening.

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In 2015, the ZIMRA introduced e-Services platform which allows taxpayers to file tax returns via the internet.  No doubt this e-Services platform has reduced human interaction in the tax collection processes and subsequently improved the flow of the tax collection process. However, long term gains will only be possible if ZIMRA adopts more technology (thus removing some humans) in its operations.


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3 thoughts on “ZIMRA Working On Replacing Humans With Technology To Reduce Corruption By Employees

  1. Thus just shows how ZIMRA wants to look like it’s dealing with corruption, but with misplaced measures. The luggage is checked by human beings, that’s where the corruption is done. No computer system will side step that.

    It’s policy and procedure that helps stem corruption. Computers actually facilitate IT related crime, as previously witnessed at ZIMRA. This again was facilitated by poor policy and procedures.

    The day the ZIMRA is intentionally breached, we’ll understand just how important disaster recovery plans and good IT policy are. Just remember when border posts came to a halt because of an old server, with no backup.

    It would have been be nice if the author had analysed the proposal from a tech perspective, rather than amplify an quotation from ZIMRA.

  2. Automation is key but the checks , systems and surveillance on the ground for those scrupulous need to be put in place so that the automation and systems of thorough checks on ground ,work together to clear the dirty work and mind sets of corruptive culture in the ZIMRA employee profile.

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